Contending For The Faith
(1) In the Christian life, we have a goal.
(2) In the Christian life, we have an inspiration. We have the thought of the unseen cloud of witnesses
for they have witnessed their confession to Christ and they are now witnesses of our performance.
Actors would act with increased intensity if they knew that one of the greatest of their profession was sitting in the stalls watching them. Athletes would double their efforts if they knew that the stadium was full of famous Olympic athletes watching their performance. It is of the very essence of the Christian life that it is lived in the gaze of the heroes of the faith who lived, suffered and died in their day and generation. How can anyone avoid the struggle for greatness when an audience like that is looking down on us?
Their first task is to “put off”
(3) In the Christian life, we have a handicap
The disciples of Christ must surely realize that to ‘follow in his steps’ is to experience opposition, pain, suffering and rejection.
This runner must keep his eyes ‘fixed on Jesus’ (NEB), not only at the first moment of the race, but constantly during the whole struggle
When we feel that we cannot summon another ounce of energy for ‘the race that is set before us’, we must think of the race that was set before him.